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TAG DER BRIEFMARKE - THE DAY OF THE STAMP

This page was last updated
10-Nov-2022 08:48

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INTRODUCTION TO THE DAY OF THE STAMP

BACKGROUND: The day of the stamp was the brainchild of German Philatelist Hans von Rudolphi (1884-1944). During the World Congress of the F.I.P in Jan 1936 the delegates proposed that member countries organise a stamp day, which was initially slated to be on the first Sunday of the year after 7th Jan.

This date was chosen as it was the anniversary of the birth of Heinrich von Stephan (7th Jan 1831 - 8th Apr 1897), Minister of post for Prussia, The North German Confederation, co-founder or the Universal Postal System and finally Minister of Post for the German Empire.

At the congress in Paris the following year members agreed that there should be some flexibility in the date but due to the importance of the date to Germany, the Germans decided to use the original date for their subsequent stamp days.

During the period that stamp day was commemorated in Nazi Germany (1936 - 1944) numerous stamps, official postcards, private postcards, souvenir sheets and special cancellations were issued by the Reichspost as well as any number of other organisations and private entities.

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OFFICIAL STAMPS

Germany did not issue its first official Tag der Briefmarke stamp until 1941 and this was followed by other special issues in 1942, 1943 and 1944. All four stamps naturally have a stamp related theme from a postal rider blowing his horn (1941), a stamp collector examining his collection (1942), a postal delivery coach (1943) and finally a post horn and envelope (1944).

All four stamps are semi-postal stamps of the same value: 6Rpf for the cost of the delivery and a 24Rpf surcharge for war related charities.

There is another unofficial Tag der Briefmarke stamp that was created by the Ka-be stamp album manufacturer in 1937. The company bought a number of complete 3Rpf Hindenburg Medallion stamp sheets and obliterated every alternate stamp with black ink and added a message in white text "Tag der Briefmarke 10.1.1937" or "Ka-Be Briefmarken Alben allen veran". The stamps were valid but the Reichspost was less than pleased and moved to ban the practice soon after.

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ABOVE LEFT: 1941 issue: Michel 762
ABOVE CENTRE LEFT: 1942 issue: Michel 811
ABOVE CENTRE RIGHT: 1943 issue: Michel 828
ABOVE RIGHT: 1944 issue: Michel 904

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OFFICIAL POSTCARDS

Official postcards were printed in 1939, 1940 and 1941 only. 1939 and 1940 saw two official postcards each year and finally in 1941 a set of four postcards was produced as well as an additional single card. There are a number of other official postcards that were issued just prior to the Day of the Stamp itself, but I have not included them here since they are not inscribed "Tag der Briefmarke", eventhough they are most often found with Tag der Briefmarke special cancellations.

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OFFICIAL POSTCARDS
P239/01 and P239/02
(8th Jan 1939)

The two official cards, P239/01 and P239/02, published in 1936 both feature an image of Mercury, the winged messenger. Both were produced for the Reichsbund der Philatelisten and have a pre-printed, 3Rpf, Hindenburg Medallion stamp.

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ABOVE LEFT: 1939 P239/01
ABOVE RIGHT: 1939 P239/02 line

OFFICIAL POSTCARDS
P288 and P289
(7th Jan 1940)

The two 1940's issue official postcards, P288 and P289, have different designs, but both feature a 6Rpf post horn pre-printed stamp. P288 was sponsored by the K.d.F Sammlergruppe (Kraft durch Freude collectors’ group) and features a steel helmet, a stamp and a sword with the K.d.F symbol below. The card cost 15Rpf but the postal value was only 6Rpf.

P289 was sponsored by the R.d.P (Reichsbund der Philatelisten) and feature a postal worker delivering the mail. This time the card cost 25Rpf but again only 6Rpf was to cover the cost of postage.

Unlike other pre-printed stamps that also existed as self-adhesive stamps, the 6Rpf post horn was only used pre-printed on postcards and was never available as a stamp in its own right.

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ABOVE LEFT: 1940 P288
ABOVE RIGHT: 1940 P289 line

OFFICIAL POSTCARDS
P241 and P308/01 to /04
(12th Jan 1941)

Official postcard P241 is very similar to the 1940 Tag der Briefmarke P289. The pre-printed stamp on this postcard is a 5Rpf Hindenburg Medallion and on this occasion the card cost 20Rpf.

P308/01 to /04 is a set of four similar postcards. Each of the four postcards cost 25Rpf and the postage paid was only 3Rpf, covered by a Hitler portrait pre-printed stamp, so 22Rpf of the revenue want to war charities. The cards feature the Afrikakorps, The German Field post, The German Navy and members of the Todt Organisation.

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ABOVE LEFT: 1941 P241
ABOVE RIGHT: 1941 P308/01 to /04

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PRIVATE POSTCARDS

A large number of private postcards were printed every year from 1936 until 1944. Private postcards are postcards that were not generally available throughout all of Germany, being used mostly to promote local events, buildings, tourist locations and propaganda events. They can exist either with or without a pre-printed stamp. Those with a pre-printed stamp are given a PP number and those without are not. Below is a selection of cards that were issued specifically for the Day of the Stamp, doubtless there are many more than those shown here.

PRIVATE POSTCARDS
(7th Jan 1936)

The first two cards below were printed for the Reichsbund der Philatelisten (R.d.P) and both exists in more than one variation for a total of around 15 different versions. The third card also exists several versions depending on the value of the pre-printed stamp.

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ABOVE LEFT: 1936: PP122-C-20/01
ABOVE CENTRE LEFT: 1936: PP122-C-20/05
ABOVE CENTRE RIGHT: 1936: PP127-C-02

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PRIVATE POSTCARDS
(11th Jan 1937)

1937 saw an explosion of private postcards, second only to the amount published in 1938. Most of the cards exist in more than one version, usually differentiated by the colour and of the value of the pre-printed stamp. The example below left was available in German and French and was published to honour the F.I.P (Federation Interationale de Philatelie)

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ABOVE LEFT: LUXEMBURG
ABOVE CENTRE LEFT: 1937: HAMBURG
ABOVE CENTRE RIGHT: 1937: BEHRENS
ABOVE RIGHT: 1937: ERFURT

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ABOVE LEFT: 1937: BAD NAUHEIM
ABOVE CENTRE LEFT: 1937: ASCHAFFENBURG
ABOVE CENTRE RIGHT: 1937: KA-BE
ABOVE RIGHT: 1937: CHEMNITZ

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ABOVE LEFT: 1937: MUNICH
ABOVE RIGHT: 1937: AUSSIG

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PRIVATE POSTCARDS
(8th and 9th Jan 1938)

1938 saw more private issue Tag der Briefmarke postcards published than any other year during the Nazi period.

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ABOVE LEFT: 1938: GORLITZ
ABOVE CENTRE LEFT: 1938: HALLE
ABOVE CENTRE RIGHT: 1938: GUBEN
ABOVE RIGHT: 1938: FRANKFURT (MAIN)


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ABOVE LEFT: 1938: REGENSBURG
ABOVE CENTRE LEFT: 1938: SORAU
ABOVE CENTRE RIGHT: 1938: SEESTADT ROSTOCK
ABOVE RIGHT: 1938: REICHSBUND der PHILATELISTEN


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ABOVE LEFT: 1938: BAD NAUHEIM
ABOVE CENTRE LEFT: 1938: BELGARD
ABOVE CENTRE RIGHT: 1938: DESSAU
ABOVE RIGHT: 1938: FRANKFURT (ODER)


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ABOVE LEFT: 1938: BERGEDORF
ABOVE CENTRE LEFT: 1938: SCHAUBECK
ABOVE CENTRE RIGHT: 1938: DRESDEN


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PRIVATE POSTCARDS
(7th and 8th Jan 1939)

1939 wasn't a prolific year for private issue postcards when compared to 1938, due partly to the war from 1st Sep 1939, although this did not affect the Tag der Briefmarke cards which were issued in Jan. The first card, below left, was a re-issue of a 1938 postcard PP122-C-89, only now with a different overprint.

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ABOVE LEFT: 1939: BREMEN
ABOVE CENTRE LEFT: 1939: GROSS DEUTCHES REICH


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PRIVATE POSTCARDS
(7th Jan 1940)

In 1940 with the war in full swing thoughts turned to things other than the issue of Tag der Briefmarke commemorative postcards. The example below was published for Nürnberg collectors and features a simple low-profile design of a wreath and an early issue Bavarian stamp.

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ABOVE LEFT: 1940: NÜRNBERG


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PRIVATE POSTCARDS
(12th Jan 1941)

With the war in the west done and dusted by Jan 1941, things were calmer for the period between the defeat of France and the invasion of Russia. That likely explains the increase in the number of Tag der Briefmarke postcards published in 1941. If you have been paying attention you will no doubt notice that the second card below is almost the same as the official postcard P241 only now without a pre-printed stamp and a different inscription.

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ABOVE LEFT: 1941: NEUSTADT
ABOVE CENTRE LEFT: 1941: REICHSBUND der PHILATELISTEN
ABOVE CENTRE RIGHT: 1941: ALSACE
ABOVE RIGHT: 1941: LUXEMBURG

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ABOVE LEFT: 1941: KOLMAR
ABOVE RIGHT: 1941: SOLINGEN

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PRIVATE POSTCARDS
(11th Jan 1942)

1942 was an usual year for the Tag der Briefmarke private postcards as it saw the issue of a set of 10 different cards in HAMBURG. The postcards below left, PP155-C-4/01 to /10, all feature a 5Rpf stamp with an image of Adolf Hitler. Each of the cards also features a stamp from one of Germany's allies or areas now under German occupation.

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ABOVE LEFT: 1942: HAMBURG
ABOVE CENTRE LEFT: 1942: VIENNA
ABOVE CENTRE RIGHT: 1942: LEOBEN
ABOVE RIGHT: 1942: LEOBEN


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ABOVE LEFT: 1942: DORTMUND


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PRIVATE POSTCARDS
(10th Jan 1943)

Most of the private postcards published in 1943 are rather plain and uninspiring, likely because the war was now in its 4th year and resources were becoming more and more scarce. The first card, below left, is the same as the 1942 issue from Vienna, only now with a black overprint. This was likely excess, unsold stock being recycled.

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ABOVE LEFT: 1943: VIENNA
ABOVE CENTRE LEFT: 1943: BRUNN
ABOVE CENTRE RIGHT: 1943: WESERMÜNDE
ABOVE RIGHT: 1943: EUROPEAN POSTAL CONGRESS


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SPECIAL CANCELLATIONS

Special cancellations were used every year from 1937 until 1943. The usage varied considerably in terms of the number of designs available and the number of towns and cities using the special handstamp. The high point being 1941 when 10 different designs were available for a total of 212 different handstamps (BERLIN and VIENNA being the only two locations where all 10 designs were used).

Quick Links: 1936, 1937, 1938, 1939, 1940, 1941, 1942, 1943

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ABOVE LEFT: 1936
ABOVE CENTRE LEFT: 1937
ABOVE CENTRE RIGHT: 1938
ABOVE RIGHT: 1939

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ABOVE LEFT: 1940
ABOVE CENTRE LEFT: 1941
ABOVE CENTRE RIGHT: 1942
ABOVE RIGHT: 1943

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CONTACT INFORMATION

If you have any questions or comments, please send an email to the following address:

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